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Monthly Archives: August 2009

Wandering down under

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How bizarre to come to the other side of the world and yet find ourselves in familiar surroundings. We are staying at a community called Berakah (valley of blessing) retreat near Warkworth on the North Island. Six generations of our host’s family have been on this land since 1874. The original settlers in this county were from Northumberland, UK, and as we travel around we have found many street names taken from places in North Northumberland. We have had an amazing couple of days hearing stories about this land and sharing stories from our Celtic heritage.

 

Too many words?

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Many Western cultures are very word based and are very suspicious of silence. Yet for the Japanese, in some cases, less talk says more as the pauses and silence communicate much. Some would say that they are even suspicious of words as they are more concerned with actions.

In New Zealand, in certain circumstances the Maori people will meet for discussions on a marae (a community gathering place) in a wharenui (meeting house). There, a speaker will stand and deliver his talk and then sit down and there will be silence, to allow others to contemplate his words before the next speaker.

I once heard a wise man┬átalk about the many words used in religion, he said “Church is a little bit like a swimming pool – all the noise comes from the shallow end.”